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Saturday, March 20, 2004

Snow Snow Snow

There is no more discouraging word for New England baseball than snow.
Last year, the high school baseball season in New Hampshire, where I live, was postponed for about 10-14 days because of March snow storms. Two days from now, tryouts at the local high school begin--in the gym again.
My son and four of his baseball friends on the AAU team have traveled to Derry and Lawrence, MA, indoor facilities since November to train, and, honestly, they are bored now. They are ready to get dirty, even muddy, rather than field one more ground ball off plastic grass, throw one more pitch off a wooden "mound," hit one more toss from the pitching machine or from their coaches. They are ready to get wet, get cold, shiver in the 40-degree cold of a cloudy late afternoon sky up in Hanover or over in Dover. They are ready to get "stung" -- even through those $40 batting gloves with the scientific padding -- when the ball and bat meet, hop up and down when the ball finds their cold foot in the fifth inning of a 10-8 game. They will be happy to put on their jackets and sweatshirts between innings to stay warm enough to cheer for their teammates.
And I am ready to stand under the same sky, in the same fading light, in the same temperature the kids are playing in, for two and half hours to wait for the timely hit, the right pitch, the nice catch.
But I really hate snow in March. It's out of season.